After meeting a group of women from Condega, Nicaragua who spoke at the CLPP
conference last year, I was moved to join the struggle for reproductive freedom. After a few emails and research, I left for Condega. I spent a month in Condega working with Amanda and Helen (the women I heard speak) around issues of reproductive rights, violence and empowerment for young women. They run their program out of a small technical school for young women.
I learned facilitation as well as a new perspective on reproductive rights from a global viewpoint. I was able to take away the importance of fighting for reproductive freedom for all women as well as ideas that are transferrable to other places that need these same rights.
Looking through the CLPP/PopDev archives has given me a much stronger sense of what CLPP/PopDev have meant and the impact that the people who have contributed over the past 30 years in such a wide variety of ways have made.
In the upcoming weeks, we will be posting more CLPP/PopDev archival materials and connecting the main threads to current experiences. As we are looking back on our collective history and exploring how that effects our present, I encourage us, as Cara Page, a CLPP alum said, to ask ourselves what we desire and to speak (or write or dance or paint or draw or knit [insert your preferred mode of expression here]) truth to power. What does reproductive freedom and liberation mean to you?
"Last year I opened the Speak Out and simultaneously discovered that public speaking wasn't that scary, and that it was okay to talk about my abortion. And I got an "I had an abortion" pin that's been on my backpack ever since. <3" - Ellen Green
Catherine Megill, conference participant, reflects on the CLPP Conference, “From Abortion Rights to Social Justice: Building the Movement for Reproductive Freedom”--
Last year was my first year attending CLPP and I found it incredibly
inspiring. Since, I have worked at both Planned Parenthood and the YWCA to help
fight for the rights of women. I also have taken on leadership roles in multiple
campus organizations that directly deal with women and reproductive health and
rights. After attending a session on blogging I even started my own feminist
blog, (and I am happy to report it has really picked up)! It really has changed
my life and my career path. It gave me something I am truly passionate about,
and I will forever be thankful for the experience.